The RHONY lady will reign as Mermaid Queen to support Hurricane Sandy-ravaged Coney Island.

on May 30, 2013 - The Dish

We always knew Carole Radziwill had royal ties, and now she can add  another title to her impressive lineage -- Mermaid Queen.

The Real Housewives of New York City star has been crowned Queen of Coney Island's Annual Mermaid Parade. She'll reign over iconic Brooklyn celebration with her king, comedian Judah Friedlander, as the parade rolls through the beachfront neighborhood on June 22.

It's a role Carole was fated to have -- based on her previous experience and wardrobe.

"I was introduced to the Mermaid Parade six years ago," Carole said. "I went with my friend, Darren Aronofsky who grew up in Coney Island. I became so enamored with mermaids that shortly after that I bought my first mermaid skirt -- a gorgeous sea-green sequined Moschino. I just had a feeling that one day I was going to be the Mermaid Queen."

For a New Yorker like Carole, the parade stands above the myriad oddball parades and celebrations the city hosts.

"I've lived in New York long enough, I've been to every parade, and the Mermaid Parade is one-of-a-kind," Carole said. "There is a great eclectic mix of sweet little kids, and camp, and drag queens with a really strong message about family."

This year the parade is asking its eclectic fans and participants for help. The parade organizers were already concerned about raising enough money to support the event (which last year hosted 750,000 spectators), then Hurricane Sandy hit. The storm destroyed the Mermaid Parade's historical museum and performance space, which created the income that funded the parade.

And so the savvy creators took to the internet, starting a Kickstarter to help fund the parade and offering everything from tote bags and buttons to personal Port A Potties for donations. And the tactic worked -- with just days to go the parade has already hit their goal to ensure this event goes off without a hitch. 

"The parade is an integral part of the community," Carole said. "It brings good will, it's good for the economy. It's a cultural icon. We need to save it."

And since it has been saved, Carole can prove once and for all that mermaids are having their moment in the cultural zeitgeist. 

"I've heard all the buzz about 'mermaids being the new vampires,'" Carole said. "We don't want to be vampires. Mermaids are mermaids. It's just a lot of noise coming from the vampire camp. Mermaids don't care about the vampires, they don't even know the vampires exist. Vampires, first of all, come out at night because no one wants to see them. Mermaids are Robert Redford, Janis Joplin, a cold gin martini and good salty caviar combined. Plus, we can swim."

Can't make it to the parade? Watch Carole's other beach romp -- this year's Summer by Bravo spot.